While You Were Sunbathing

It’s that time of year when we here at dealchecker start to imagine ourselves jetting off somewhere hot for a week or two in the sun, unencumbered by the trappings of winter – no big boots, no woolly hats, no gloves. In fact, nothing more than a bikini, a good slap of suncream and a sunlounger will do for us. Ok, maybe a trashy novel too.

“So, what are we going to do?” says your travelling partner. “We’re already doing it,” you reply. If your holiday companion just doesn’t like lying around all day then beach holidays can seem off the menu – which is a Very Sad Thing for beach lovers.

Never fear – all is not lost! We’ve put together this handy guide for anyone wanting to get busy, active, or productive whilst you’re sunbathing. Not that you’re not busy sunbathing, or being productive whilst you’re there, it just takes a trained eye to see it. So, active types – this one’s for you!


PADI Scuba Course

Red Sea scuba
Derek Keats

If you’re heading anywhere with great marine life – think the Maldives, the Red Sea, Mexico and the Caribbean, and you have a little cash to spare then you should definitely take a PADI scuba course and learn to dive. You’ll be astonished at all the bright colours and amazing sights underwater, and all that hard work will build up an appetite.


Learn a Language

Learn ALL the languages!
Fiona Bradley

If you prefer to work out your mind, then how about a language course? There are all sorts of ways you can learn now, with kindles, tablets, and mp3 players all offering cheap and easy ways to get yourself learning the lingo. Language newcomers should try something like French or Spanish, but if you’ve got a few under your belt already how about Mandarin or Russian?


Local Excursions

Water taxis in Grenada
Lee Coursey

For many of us who’ve eked our budget out to just get to the pristine white sands, local excursions can be just a stretch too far, although they needn’t break the bank. More and more hotels offer free glass bottomed boat trips and other sea excursions, whilst exploring local towns shouldn’t cost the earth either.


Take up Crafts

Knitting Graffiti
Hostelling Finland

If you’re a potterer then you probably miss just getting on with your own little tasks when you’re away. Think about taking up a craft that you can pop in your luggage and enjoy in beautiful surroundings. This could be knitting, figurine painting, watercolours, or anything else you can think of. Plus, you’ll always remember where you make that first thing!


Hiking and Exploring

Beach Hiking

Enlist a local guide and set off exploring your new landscape – that could mean hiking up the local hills or mountains, hiring a bike and cycling around the island or seeing where you can get to just walking along the beach. Think of all the exciting places you could discover! Don’t be afraid to make a detour to that interesting building, or to pop into that bar for a chat and you’ll come back with some amazing stories to tell your other half.


TV Box Set

Liz Lemon and Jack Donaghy!
Joe Shlabotnik

If you’re really looking forward to doing nothing, but with a hint of entertainment, then nobody will think bad of you for taking a tablet loaded with those box sets you’ve been meaning to watch for ages. If you’re out of inspiration, try Mad Men, Veronica Mars, Entourage or 30 Rock for gripping but not too serious entertainment.


Take up a Sport

Maui SUP

There are so many sports to choose from on beachy holidays, so there’s no excuse for sitting there complaining about being bored. How about mastering windsurfing, having a go at surfing, challenging anyone and everyone to beach volleyball, learning how to sail a catamaran, or taking up SUPing – the new craze. SUPing stand for stand-up paddling and it’s great for exploring calm seas and getting a good workout on the sly.


Read That Big Book

War and Peace

Or perhaps it’s time to finally beat that super-dense big, thick book you’ve been saying you’ll read, pretending you’ve read, or just been dreaming of reaching the last pages of. All out of ideas? How about ‘Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell’, ‘Cryptonomicon’ or ‘Les Miserables’ – or of course the classic “Have you actually finished…?” book, ‘War and Peace’.


Need inspiration on the destination? Try our Real Deals for the best bargains each week right into your inbox. Or if you’ve read War and Peace (or anything similarly meaty) and want to tell us about it, how about dropping us a line on our facebook page?